An exhausting circumstance
Chronic pain is one of the most difficult things people face in life. It is one of the most common reasons people see the doctor, and something that medicine often has very few answers for.
Chronic pain can be frustrating and overwhelming. Pain killers usually are not the long-term answer. Coping on your own is very difficult; yet family and friends sometimes can’t help. You do your best, but it gets exhausting.
Grief over what isn’t anymore
There are good memories of the past and life that was easier. Now there are so many things that can’t be done. What used to be fun just isn’t possible.
Life gets boring. Sitting around is monotonous. Only so many hours on the Internet or watching TV until the brain starts to feel numb. Sad when you hear people talk about doing the things that are now impossible. Feeling angry at your body for betraying you.
There are hours, sometimes a day here and there, when it is better. On good days, it’s natural to go all out – get things done or try to have fun. Not every day is like this, and it feels great. Then BAM! Back on the floor, another takedown, and pain wins again.
The next few days it feels like you were hit by a truck. Payback for doing too much. It is not fair, but good days usually lead to feeling worse. Counseling for Chronic Pain involves helping to implement strategies to moderate activity.
Impact on Relationships
Pain is tough, but sometimes the relationships are harder. Trying to pretend things are okay, trying to hide it so your partner doesn’t worry. Trying not to ask for help. There is guilt about being a burden.
At times you are a bear, taking the pain out on those around you.
Loved ones don’t always know what to do. You look fine sometimes – pain is invisible. They say it’s okay to talk, but then they don’t know what to say. People try to help, they work hard, but they can’t really change the pain. Sometimes they’re angry, and it’s hard to blame them.
Therapy can help to give support when loved ones can’t or don’t know how.
Doctors used to bring some hope. “This is a medicine/surgery/therapy that works well for a lot of people!” Then comes the disappointment when what works for all these other people doesn’t seem to do much good.
The doctor questions whether you’ve been doing the exercises/taking the pills/going to appointments. Then a referral to yet another specialist.
A new specialist seems different, a new idea. Some progress, but then not enough. Eventually they suggest an antidepressant.
“Usually in a case like yours the pain would be gone by now. There’s no medical reason you should be feeling this way.” They don’t say, ‘it’s all in your head,” but that’s what you hear. Doctors are experts at problems they can see, great at curing what can be found in a test – but often pain is not like that.
Therapy for Chronic Pain isn’t a magic pill, and it doesn’t mean you are “Crazy.” It is one alternative to helping people feel better and think differently. Therapy helps people with pain to have a more fulfilling life – regardless if pain goes away.
At first it was easier to put on a happy face. It seemed like there was more strength to fight through. There was belief that things could get better. A couple of those pills used to help, until gradually they didn’t. Another pill worked great, but all those side effects – feeling like a zombie was not good.
After many treatments, it’s difficult now to have hope. You used to be up for trying anything, but now what’s the point?
Therapy for Chronic Pain can help you find meaning again in life – whether the next specialist has a magic cure.
Therapy for Chronic Pain
This doesn’t have to be something you go through on your own. Therapy can help. I can be the person on your side, someone who understands it’s real.
Therapy for chronic pain can help you cope with many factors. We can work through the grief process about what’s been lost. We will identify ways to moderate activities and improve self-care so that flare-ups are less severe and re-injury is less likely.
Communication skills can be learned to make it easier to ask loved ones for what is needed. We can work to improve relationships that have been strained. We will work to identify and change negative thinking patterns to help you feel better.
We will find positive coping skills to help avoid self-destructive behaviors. Relaxation and mindfulness approaches will reduce your overall level of stress.
Living with pain
Pain does not have to dictate who we are as people, or how much we enjoy life, even if we must live with it. There are alternative ways to think, behave, and cope to find fulfillment and meaning again.
Therapy for Chronic Pain is not a miracle cure, but it helps to create a new way of living beyond just suffering. Call me now at (720) 315-0123 or fill out the contact form below to start therapy soon.